“I Can do Whatever With Anybody”: Russell Westbrook Responds After Trail Blazers Drubbing

Published 11/07/2021, 8:06 AM EST
Nov 6, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Los Angeles Lakers point guard Russell Westbrook (right) shoots the ball against Portland Trail Blazers small forward Norman Powell (24) during the second half at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports


The NBA 2021-22 season has been anything but kind to the Los Angeles Lakers. They have carried their bad luck of losing players to injuries from the last season to this, and it is affecting not only their record so far but also the opinions of those who were convinced that this was a title-contending team. With LeBron James also benched for at least a week because of an abdominal strain, along with many others, the onus of bringing in victories automatically fell on Russell Westbrook.

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Unfortunately, Russ has hardly been the offseason blockbuster everyone had hoped. The Los Angeles Lakers blew a 19-point lead against Oklahoma City Thunder first and eventually lost. Then suffered another blowout 105-90 loss against the Portland Trail Blazers tonight. The most upsetting part was, none of their starters could reach double digits in scoring.

Anthony Davis left midway because of a stomach illness, Westbrook finished with a mere 8 points next to his name. However, the rest of the credit goes to the bench, who rallied back. Otherwise, this could have been an even more humiliating loss if it isn’t already.

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Moreover, fans were furious with Westbrook’s inability to lead the way in LeBron’s absence. He was added to the roster for the sole reason of being the teammate others would rely on when Bron isn’t on the floor with them. But it seems like Russ has his own justifications for it.

Nov 6, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers small forward Norman Powell (right) blocks a shot by Los Angeles Lakers point guard Russell Westbrook (0) during the second half at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

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Russell Westbrook expresses his side of the story

It doesn’t take very long for critics and fans to start pointing fingers and that’s exactly what happened. After the purple and gold lost to Portland, fans bashed Frank Vogel and demanded Westbrook’s trade. Hearing this Russ obviously felt the need to talk about his shortcomings.

He explained, “If you just kinda look back and you see the last three or four years, I’ve always been on new teams, so I’m just kind like figuring out the best way to better play. The good part about it is I’m so blessed and thankful that I can do so many different things on the floor, that I can do whatever, with anybody. I can play with anybody. And I’m very comfortable with that.”

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He tried to reassure those in worry that he has and will continue to try and give his best whenever he plays. “I take a lot of pride, and I take a lot of just energy and effort to make sure I can be the best I can be with the guys we have on this team and make the best of this situation,” he said.

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With all that is going on with the Lakers, this should certainly provide some relief to fans. There is no denying that the team is obviously better when LeBron James is playing. But with him resting, they have to make do with what they have. And if Westbrook wants to avoid this brutal criticism, he needs to work out the chemistry issues faster. Or else the Lakers could suffer the same fate they did last season.

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Yashima Bhatia

1719 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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